Author Topic: Funding Shortage  (Read 3669 times)

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dancer-sm

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Funding Shortage
« on: Jan 20, 2011, 02:10 pm »
My school has been greatly impacted by the economic problems. Now they are facing the possibility of cutting the arts program, including band, theatre, and art. Theatre has provided my friends and I so many privileges, so I don't know what I will do if it is cut. :( I was just wondering if anyone has experienced this problem and if so, how you handled it. If you haven't I would still really appreciate advice.

Thanks!
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dallas10086

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Re: Funding Shortage
« Reply #1 on: Jan 20, 2011, 03:30 pm »
My junior and senior high school years this was quickly becoming a problem as well. They initially staved off cutting out the programs by charging $20-$30 per arts course, not exactly what my parents' appreciated since I was taking three of them by senior year.

Off the top of my head there are a few options open to you should your programs get cut:
-organize or join an arts related club, whether it's affiliated with your school or an off-campus program. This way at least you can have an advisor of some sort to help you organize what you're doing, and (the best part) you'll be able to decide as a group what you'd like your focus to be.
-consult with your local theatres and see what they have available to you. Many theatres offer youth programs where you can learn about their productions and volunteer to work with their staff.
-visit the library. Skip the internet and dust off that library card. Reading about what interests you most is a good foundation for the hands-on experience you can gain later. Better yet, find the reading lists of college courses that interest you and read those books. You'll be ahead of the game.

On a positive note, the lack of an arts program at your school means you can take your arts education into your own hands, by learning more about what interests you.

dancer-sm

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Re: Funding Shortage
« Reply #2 on: Jan 20, 2011, 03:57 pm »
Thank you so much for your advice, I'm glad I can just sort of vent my frustrations on here. I think the hardest thing about possibly getting cut is the chance of loosing all of my relationships. I'm just very very worried and hurt that my school won't give our department a chance even though  we just got a new, magnificient director to improve our program. I suppose if it does get cut I can go back to completely focusing on graduating early from h.s, and going to college sooner.

Again, I thank you for your advice, after all we stage managers have to stick together!  :D

dancer-sm :)

loebtmc

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Re: Funding Shortage
« Reply #3 on: Jan 21, 2011, 02:52 am »
ALSO write your elected representatives (state and federal) because funding for the arts is in jeopardy everywhere right now.

SMLois

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Re: Funding Shortage
« Reply #4 on: Jan 21, 2011, 11:37 am »
My Junior year of high school there was a teacher's strike which put an end to ALL extra-curricular programming for the entire year - no sports, no theatre, nothing that required teacher presence outside of school time.

In protest, we organized an afternoon walk out - all of the schools in town - the students all just left after lunch and then marched in protest to the local politicians office with big signs.  We were in support of our teachers, but we wanted our programming back.

Tempest

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Re: Funding Shortage
« Reply #5 on: Jan 21, 2011, 01:58 pm »
My Junior year, the theatre teacher quit, unexpectedly, in the middle of the year.  A few friends and I decided that we were not going to go without a spring show, so we did it ourselves.  We were told that we had $0 for a budget, but if we could do it without money, we could use the (laughingly called) theatre space. 
We did The Importance of Being Ernest, in modern dress, borrowed furniture from our parents' homes, and a set whipped together from flats already in existence, painted with half-dead paint from the paint closet.  We used our own money to photo-copy flyers and posted them everywhere allowed, including asking students in wheelchairs if they would put them on the backs of their chairs and be rolling billboards (I remember a guy, named Chris, who had a basketball chair, was thrilled with this idea, and thought it was genius!).  For some reason I cannot recall, the wrestling team adopted our little project and came in to do heavy lifting, on occasion.
I played Cecily, and was one of the co-directors, and TD for the show (we did not get a large response to the audition notice, or the call for tech help).  I was completely exhausted, but very proud that we had full houses all three nights of performance, and raised about $500 for use for the next show.
By standard theatre protocols, it was a hot pasty mess.  But, we got good reviews, learned a ton, and really, a couple of 1/4 trained, 16 year old girls put up a well received show with no budget and no faculty support or advice.  I can be proud of that, forever!
Moral of the story: If you can convince your administrators you can do a show on no budget, and with only a nominal faculty advisor, go for it.  You'll never learn more!
Jessica: "Of course I have a metric size 4 dinglehopper in my kit!  Who do you think I am?"

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dewitt

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Re: Funding Shortage
« Reply #6 on: Jan 22, 2011, 01:16 am »
If you have a willing adult adviser and your problem is primarily money try exploring some creative ways to raise money yourself.
In order to do the art you love, you may have to put some effort into work that is less exciting. Here in the north popular ways to raise money are bake sales, snow shoveling, pet care, and car washing to name a few. Our funding for the arts has also been
reduced drastically. Recently the community theatre my friends run have decided that if they want to survive they have to be willing to try things they might otherwise have turned down. Maybe you can even try some creative things that appeal to your classmates like running errands for them or doing their chores. I wish you the best of luck. I think every school should have all the arts available to their students. It makes me very sad when I hear of all the schools in our area that are cutting the arts out.

maximillionx

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Re: Funding Shortage
« Reply #7 on: Jan 22, 2011, 11:20 am »
In high school, our theatre program was an extracurricular activity only.  We had a faculty advisor and raised the money entirely on our own with little to no funding from the school.  We did all sorts of money-raising activities so we'd actually have a budget to work with, my favorite of which included ad-runs.  We'd get teams together after school and take different areas of our home town and ask local businesses if they'd like to place a certain sized ad in our program for a certain amount of money.  We'd open these up to parents, friends, teachers, and whoever else wanted to make a donation.

Don't give up pursuing what you love.  It may be hard sometimes, but trust me when I say when you have worked as hard as we did in high school, it makes it all the sweeter.

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